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France takes measures to prevent spread of bird flu to humans

by 5m Editor
9 June 2005, at 12:00am

FRANCE - France has done a lot of work to prevent a possible massive spread of bird flu to human beings, French government health consultant Didier Houssin said on Wednesday.

France takes measures to prevent spread of bird flu to humans - FRANCE - France has done a lot of work to prevent a possible massive spread of bird flu to human beings, French government health consultant Didier Houssin said on Wednesday.

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), the bird flu virus has acquired the capacity to be transmitted to human beings, although its animal-to-human and human-to-human transmission capacity is still limited at the current stage, said Houssin.

Hospitals across France are now well-prepared to host a 10- to 46-percent increase in patients in case of a possible outbreak of the virus among humans and a large team of medical personnel is ready to render home services, he said.

France currently has a reserve of 13.8 million doses of antiviral drugs and more is under production, he added.

Moreover, the country has purchased about 40 million doses of vaccine and more than 10 million masks, which will be ready for use by 2006, when maneuvers against a massive bird-flu outbreak among humans will be staged, he said.

According to reports, H5N1 bird flu has caused 54 human deaths since 2003. It is yet to know what changes the virus has experienced in birds before it was transmitted to humans.

Fearing that the virus might become adapted to human bodies, the WHO has asked countries around the world to adopt preemptive measures against massive outbreaks among humans.

Source: Xinhua News Agency - 9th June 2005

5m Editor